The new chief executive of Greene King used his first set of results to commit the company to brewing, dismissing suggestions that he might follow Fuller’s in selling its beer business (The Times £). Greene King’s new boss has kept the pub chain’s dividend intact, reassuring investors that it can continue to pay down a near-£2bn debt pile while maintaining a “sustainable” payout to shareholders (The Telegraph). The pub group and brewer’s chief executive Nick Mackenzie vowed to expand the range of vegan options on its menus as demand for healthier food and drink has soared – especially among younger customers (The Daily Mail). Greene King, the UK pub group, said on Thursday that it had returned to “market outperformance” in 2018 but that poor weather and consumer uncertainty would hit sales in the forthcoming year (The Financial Times £). Brewery and pub giant Greene King saw its full-year pre-tax profit drop in 2018, despite a summer of favourable weather and World Cup fever (Sky News).

In the run-up to his first outing as chief executive of Greene King, Nick Mackenzie was braced to face three key questions: would he consider exiting brewing, would he sell its tenanted pubs and would he cut the dividend? Given that he’s been in the job only two months, it was no surprise that the answer to all three was “no”. (The Times £)

The American owner of Boots reported another poor performance by the British pharmacy chain yesterday amid plans to close 200 shops (The Times £). Signs of improving pharmaceutical sales in the US during the third quarter and the continuation of its cost-cutting drive have given Walgreens Boots Alliance enough confidence to stick with its full-year earnings guidance (The Financial Times £).

Public Health England has sharply criticised baby and infant food manufacturers for loading their products with unacceptably large amounts of sugar and wrongly promoting them as good for health. (The Guardian)

The Guardian looks at the sugar content of snacks from five leading suppliers targeted kids, including Kiddylicious, Ella’s Kitchen and Bear. (The Guardian)

One in three closed shops will never reopen as retail outlets given the brutal conditions on the high street that make it almost impossible to find another tenant. (The Telegraph)

Britain experienced a deterioration in sentiment in June across a range of sectors including consumer, retail and construction, renewing concerns over the state of the economy and reversing some signs of improvement in May. (The Financial Times £)

The number of people doing gig economy work has doubled in the last three years, with young people most likely to be doing this type of flexible, insecure work, the TUC says. (The BBC)

ConAgra has its sights on the fast-growing market for meat alternatives after the company’s traditional foods and snacks struggled to boost sales in the latest quarter. (The Financial Times £)

Danish bioscience group Chr Hansen is perfectly placed to capitalise on the world’s growing appetite for cheese. Yet the company warned on Thursday of slowing sales growth and lower full-year profits, sending its shares as much as 14% lower. (The Financial Times £)

French retailer Casino is to restructure its Latin American operations in a long-awaited move to simplify its complex cross-holding structure in the region with the aim of improving the value of its Latin American assets. (The Financial Times £)